How do you like me in this: user embodiment preferences for companion agents

Elena Márquez Segura, Michael Kriegel, Ruth Aylett, Amol Deshmukh, Henriette Cramer

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution

15 Citations (Scopus)


We investigate the relationship between the embodiment of an artificial companion and user perception and interaction with it. In a Wizard of Oz study, 42 users interacted with one of two embodiments: a physical robot or a virtual agent on a screen through a role-play of secretarial tasks in an office, with the companion providing essential assistance. Findings showed that participants in both condition groups would prefer to interact with the robot companion, mainly for its greater physical or social presence. Participants highlighted advantages that this physical form of companion would afford in comparison with the virtual companion, in terms of communication and interaction. Other differences in the user’s perception of the embodiments are reflected in proxemics and adaptation of the user’s speech when talking to the companion. This work provides useful results that will inform future development of embodied agents as artificial companions.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationIntelligent Virtual Agents
Subtitle of host publication12th International Conference, IVA 2012, Santa Cruz, CA, USA, September, 12-14, 2012
EditorsYukiko Nakano, Michael Neff, Ana Paiva, Marilyn Walker
Number of pages14
ISBN (Electronic)978-3-642-33197-8
Publication statusPublished - 2012

Publication series

NameLecture Notes in Computer Science
ISSN (Print)0302-9743


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